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Thursday, November 6, 2014

Healthy Zucchini Mini-Pizzas

Seriously- don't these just look absolutely delicious?

Last night I came home from a ridiculously long day, and was craving pizza. Anything hot and covered in cheese would do for me. And of course, thanks to an e-mail for a coupon that isn't valid in the state I live in from an undisclosed pizza chain, I was not willing to pay full price for it either.

I had seen a couple of pictures featuring zucchini pizzas floating around Pinterest lately, so I decided to give it a go. Hey, if I can get cheesy goodness without all of the carbs, I'll take it! 

These little guys are super easy to make, and honestly turned out delicious! I was very pleased. All you need is:

Fresh zucchini- I used 2 small ones, but it really depends on how much you want to make
Mozzarella- again, portions depend, but I probably used about half a cup which was overkill, I'll be honest.
1 tbsp olive oil
Salt & pepper
Italian seasoning
Garlic powder
Tomato sauce- I used about ¼ cup

First you've got to cut the zucchini into thinnish slices. I definitely cut a few of mine too thick, but oh well! Don't forget to pre-heat your oven to broil!

Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet/sauce pan- you'll be sautéing the zucchini so it gets cooked without spending too much time in the oven.

Once they're all cooked thru so they're a darker color but still firm, toss 'em onto a foil-lined baking sheet. Spoon out a small amount (I certainly missed the memo on "small") of tomato sauce onto each zucchini, making sure that its pretty spread out. Then sprinkle on as much or as little cheese on as you want. You can also top them with a dash more seasoning- garlic, salt, pepper, you name it! It's your pie!

You can also add other toppings, if you'd like. I think some finely chopped mushrooms would be divine, but that may just be me. Also onions. Or peppers...

Once you have all of your mini 'zas ready to go, pop them in the oven! Keep an eye on them, because the cheese burns fast- I learned that the hard way. 

They should be done in about 3 minutes max, or whenever the cheese has melted enough to your liking. Because the zucchini wasn't in the heat long, they should still be decently crunchy. 

I know they look delicious, but at least let the little fellas cool for a few minutes before you dig in!

I was very pleasantly surprised at how they turned out. Usually when I have a craving for food (especially pizza), only the real thing will do. However, this was just the right amount of melted cheesy goodness to get my mind off of stuffed crust. 

Mine turned out a bit messy and saucy (such is life, no?), but I figure if you just lessen up a bit on the sauce and olive oil, they would be perfect finger foods for a get together or appetizer. Definitely something quick and easy to throw together!

I'm always on the hunt for healthy alternatives to my favorite comfort foods, and this is definitely one I will make again. I never thought I'd enjoy zucchini, but I am certainly proving 5-year old Fayth wrong! 

What are some of your favorite healthy comfort food alternatives? Any good recipes to share?

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